The opinions of some of the world’s notable thinkers on the killing of Osama Bin Laden are beginning to trickle out onto the web. Rather than bunch them all together in one giant round up post, I figured I’d just pop any interesting excerpts I run across in here for you to chew on.
At least we won’t have to put up with a smirking video when the 10th anniversary of his best-known atrocity comes around. Come to think of it, though, he hadn’t issued any major communiqués on any subject lately (making me wonder, some time ago, if he hadn’t actually died or been accidentally killed already), and the really hateful work of his group and his ideology was being carried out by a successor generation like his incomparably more ruthless clone in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. I find myself hoping that, like Zarqawi, Bin Laden had a few moments at the end to realize who it was who had found him and to wonder who the traitor had been. That would be something. Not much, but something.
It seems thinkable that he truly believed his own mad propaganda, often adumbrated on tapes and videos, especially after the American scuttle from Somalia. The West, he maintained, was rotten with corruption and run by cabals of Jews and homosexuals. It had no will to resist. It had become feminized and cowardly. One devastating psychological blow and the rest of the edifice would gradually follow the Twin Towers in a shower of dust. Well, he and his fellow psychopaths did succeed in killing thousands in North America and Western Europe, but in the past few years, their main military triumphs have been against such targets as Afghan schoolgirls, Shiite Muslim civilians, and defenseless synagogues in Tunisia and Turkey. Has there ever been a more contemptible leader from behind, or a commander who authorized more blanket death sentences on bystanders?